Both "Thor" and "Guardians of the Galaxy" have been responsible for introducing the cosmic elements of Marvel Comics into their cinematic universe, selling us on alien civilisations and ancient god-like beings - and selling it all with a healthy dose of science fiction.
The upcoming "Doctor Strange" bears the burden of selling the other side of the coin - the supernatural. Mysticism is, in many ways, a tougher prospect to sell audiences on as being part of the same universe that gave us the likes of "Iron Man" and "Captain America". Much like with "Thor" though, Marvel's Kevin Feige plans to use notions of real science to explain the character's magical abilities. He tells Collider:
With Doctor Strange it is a classic Marvel origin story, because he's got one of the best origins ever and it's our opportunity to take that left turn into the supernatural.
Now what is the definition of supernatural? It varies. We love the idea of playing with alternate dimensions. Strange in the crazy acid trip way, traveling through other dimensions and realms, is something we think is very very cool. Playing with the perceptions of reality.
I just watched the Neil Degrasse Tyson 'Cosmos' series, which is amazing, and which may as well be an acid trip. It is a mind bending and it's all based in physics and quantum mechanics and we're going to play a lot with the notion of that as an explanation of how the sorcerers do what they do."